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Volunteer FAQ

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  • What is a clinical trial?

    A clinical trial or research study is a study in human volunteers to evaluate medications or devices to answer specific health questions. Your participation in a clinical trial may help somenone with the medicine they need in the future. 

    Clinical trials that are performed under international and federal regulatory standards are the fastest and safest way to find effective treatments.

  • What are the benefits of being a volunteer?

    Volunteers have the pride of knowing that they are helping others.  Volunteers also benefit by receiving free medical tests, exams and medications while receiving financial compensation for study participation time.

  • Are clinical trials safe?

    Clinical research is federally regulated with built in safeguards to protect participants. There are risks to clinical trials so it is very important for volunteers to learn as much as possible about a trial before their participation begins. The ethical and legal codes that govern medical practice also apply to clinical trials.

  • How do I enroll in a study?

    To begin the enrollment process, contact a member of Prism's recruitment team and/or complete your volunteer profile (link)

    Your recruiter will guide you through the enrollment process. You can find a detailed outline of the enrollment process here: What to Expect.

  • What should I bring when I stay overnight?

    Bedding: It is a good idea to bring a comforter/blanket/sleeping bag. The blankets provided by Prism are great for use in the dosing room, but most volunteers prefer to bring their own blankets for sleeping.

    Clothing: Volunteers should bring comfortable clothing like loose fitting shirts, jeans, sweatpants. Our building is air conditioned, so packing a sweater or sweatshirt is a good idea. Women should bring a bra that does not have any underwire because the metal in underwire bras can disrupt the heart monitoring machines.

    Personal toiletry items: Soap, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo/conditioner, etc.

    Personal items: Volunteers can feel free to bring DVDs, CDs, music listening devices, laptop computers, cell phones, books, school work or work from the office, sketchbooks, knitting and games. In general, any personal hobbies that are not distracting or offensive to other volunteers/staff members will be allowed. If you are wondering if you can bring a particular item, please ask your recruiter.

    Prism provides: Clean sheets, thin blankets, towels, washcloths, and one pillow per bed.

  • What am I NOT allowed to bring?

    Upon confirmation of eligibility, the research staff will provide you a list of items that are not permitted during your stay at Prism Research.

  • Can I have visitors?

    We are committed to preventing the introduction or spread of COVID-19 into our organization and protecting our volunteers, staff and visitors.  Due to our strict mitigation policies, visitors are not currenlty allowed.


    Before COVID-19:

    Volunteers in studies that last more than 3 days are allowed visitors. Visitors are allowed until 3:00pm, Monday through Friday. Weekend visitors are not allowed. Visitors will undergo a bag check and may be asked to empty their pockets before entering the building.

    Visitors can not enter sleeping rooms and must remain in the common area. The arrival time and length of all visits must be approved by the Prism staff before visitors arrive. The staff of Prism reserves the right to decline visitation requests for any reason.

  • Do I have to do a physical screen for each study?

    Yes. Each study has different requirements, so a new physical screen must take place before you may participate in a trial.

  • When will I know if I am in the study?

    Before Prism can confirm your enrollment we must receive and review your lab results. Sometimes this process can take several days. Once your labs are reviewed by the PI and signed off, floor staff will call you to confirm  your admit date and time. They will review restrictions to follow before your admit.

  • Is food provided? What will I eat?

    All meals are provided by Prism at no cost to the volunteers. All menus are created based on the requirements of each particular study, so the food items served will vary from study to study. Some studies have very specific menus and may require that volunteers consume the entire portion of food items served. Please discuss any personal dietary concerns with your recruiter; your recruiter will let you know if any upcoming studies can accommodate your special dietary needs.

  • Do I have to fast during studies?

    Most studies do require periods of fasting before and after a dose of medication is administered. Your recruiter can discuss these fasting periods with you. You will also be notified of the length of each fast in the study specific Informed Consent document.

  • Is there a workout room? Can I exercise during my inpatient stays?

    Prism does not have a workout room. The natural effects of exercise in the human body (such as elevated heart rate and liver enzymes, sweating, and flushing of skin) can invalidate the data collected during the study. For this reason, exercise is not allowed during inpatient stays.

  • Is there a laundry room?

    There is a shared laundry facility at Prism. Volunteers are encouraged to bring enough clean clothing to last throughout their stay, however for lengthy stays there is one washer and dryer for volunteer use.

Please provide us with your contact information (below) and will get back to you as soon as possible.

If you have a general question, check Volunteer FAQ for an answer. If you're unsure of who to contact, please visit the Contact Us page.